Author Interview: Alivia Anders

Well if you’ve read my blog at all, you know I’m absolutely obsessed with this gal. (Not is a creepy way, just a “I love her book” way!) In celebration of her B-day, and the Illumines Wish giveaway, I asked her to do an interview with me and she kindly obliged! Sweet!

Heres what Goodreads has to say about her:

Alivia Anders was thirteen when she fell headfirst into the world of internet fanfic and RPG-forum board sites that showed her the ‘back door’ into the world of writing. Four years and many hours spent glued to a computer screen later she found her true calling in writing.
Alivia currently lives with her family in her hometown of Coopersburg, PA. She frequently admits that if she wasn’t so intolerant to dairy she’d live at her local ice cream shop called The Inside Scoop.

Here is our interview:

1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I turn 21 this April 11th! Haha, how’s that for a starter? Let’s see, some basics! I’m a girl, used to be hugely active in RPG Forums (especially the Harry Potter based ones!) still hold a soft spot in my heart for World of Warcraft, can’t make up my mind on my hair color, and most definitely am addicted to caffeine for life.

2. What do you do when you are not writing?

I don’t think I ever stop writing, really. I can lie and say I’m playing video games or watching True Blood hungrily, but stories still run in the back of my head like little flies buzzing about.

3. Do you have a day job?

Yes! I work in a sports collectibles shop, where I continue to dream over owning all the signed Phillies stuff.

4. Where do you get your ideas?

Life. Example, Essallie’s fire? I’m pretty sure that stemmed from the time I almost char-grilled my hands on the fireplace.

5. Do you ever experience writer’s block?

Not technically writer’s block, but writer’s distractions and procrastination. I actually blogged about the five levels that I go through when I procrastinate.

6. Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way?

Oh gosh, tons! Just about every author I’ve ever read made me want to publish more and more, because I wanted to be just as cool as them! I wanted to have stories people couldn’t wait to get their hands on the day they came out.

7. Can you tell us about your challenges in getting Illumine published?

Deadlines are the hardest. I actually had been massively behind at one point, and pulled a double all-nighter. 48 hours of straight writing and work so I could finish it. And 21k words later, I had. Who says you can’t create genius in the last few minutes?

8. If you had to go back and do it all over, is there any aspect of your novel or getting it published that you would change?

I’d take a little bit more time adding things into the first book for later pieces, but really that’s it. I love the cover, love the story it tells and I’m proud of the fact I can say I did it all myself.

9. Can you tell us about your upcoming book?

Certainly can! Obumbrate is the second book to follow Illumine, and it continues right where Illumine left off. Essallie is still trying to figure herself out- she’s a ticking clock that can blow at any moment with those bizarre fire powers! In Obumbrate we get to see a lot more of her and her past come to light, see new angles of her and her relationships with other people, maybe even a love interest!

10. Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

About 99.9% of it is all imagination. But that last .1% does come from real life experiences.

11. How did you come up with the titles?

Illumine actually was originally titled Ethereal when it was in the initial stages of formation. But the more I wrote it, the more the title didn’t fit, so I started looking for a new title. Illumine came up when I was looking for something to stand for light, because the first book is about Essallie illuminating the shadows and secrets of her past, and it stuck perfectly. Obumbrate means to darken, and it fits perfectly too for reasons you’ll see in the book!

12. What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?

So far the toughest criticism, wasn’t even criticism. I had gone to a PR even, a gathering of sorts, and when I introduced myself as an author to someone, they gave me that look, the one that said, “Oh, so you’re saying you jumped the book-writing bandwagon?” It really hurt! I’ve had the dream of being an author since middle school, I certainly didn’t jump a bandwagon. The best compliment had to be about a month after Illumine was out and one of my mother’s friends messaged her on Facebook to say she loved my book so much she wanted to get back into reading and after finishing mine she wanted to read Twilight and more. To be put in a sentence with Stephenie Meyer like that, personally, is a compliment like no other. I’d love to be where she’s at in the next five years!

13. Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

Write. I know, people say it all the time, but seriously, WRITE. You can attend all the seminars in the world, buy every how-to book in the world, listen to all the advice you can stomach, but nothing will get done unless you put pen to paper or fingers to keys and WRITE YOUR HEART OUT.

14. Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?

HAI. I LOVE ALL OF YOU AND WOULD LIKE TO GIVE YOU ALL CAKE. Seriously. You all rock, and without you, I feel only half-full. I love to write, but you guys make it that much more awesome to write. Thank you.

15. Have you ever gone out in public with your shirt on backwards, or your slippers on, and when realizing it, just said screw it?

Oh yes. But most of this was in High School. I wore my pants inside-out for almost half of the day before someone pointed it out- and it was a boy!

16. Are you a person who makes their bed in the morning, or do you not see much point?

You’re kidding, right? I hate making beds. Except on vacation. Why is that?

17. Do you go out of your way to kill bugs? Are there any that make you screeech?!

Bugs are gross for the most part. Spiders? Yuck! Ladybugs are awesome, though.

18. What book are you reading now?

I’m in the process of reading three, actually. Birthright by Willow Cross, The Keeper by Natalie Star, and Archon by Sabrina Benulis. But I haven’t gotten far into either of them because of all the stuff I’ve been doing!

19. Whats your favorite movie?

Titanic. Hands down. Followed by Alice in Wonderland (2010 Tim Burton edition), Inception, all Harry Potter movies, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and V for Vendetta.

20. Whats your favorite word of all time?

PISH POSH! Because it doesn’t matter where I am or when it’s said, but if I say it around my best friend Stephanie, she’ll reply ‘I love surprise sex!’ and vise versa. If you ever see that on a meme somewhere one day, you know where it started.

Thanks Alivia for taking the time to chat with me! 🙂 Learn more about Illumine on goodreads here. Check out my previous post for a chance to win the book. Ending soon!

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